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Published on Dec 27, 2010
Rocco Banich Long Beach Punk Rock STARS GET IN YOUR EYES As would be expected, the sudden deluge of attention caught Rocco off-guard after nearly two decades of thinking his efforts had been wholly ignored. "I'm puzzled. Shocked. And I'm overwhelmed. But this makes me very happy. I wanted people to hear my music for years and finally I found out, yeah, somebody HAS listened to it." Combine the intense interest of a couple dozen serious fans across the globe with the speed of the internet, and what you get is Rocco's newfound fifteen minutes being all the more sudden — and volatile. Unbeknownst to Rocco, the Absentees' began an unprecedented rise to infamy almost five years ago with the bootleg release of "Tryin' To Mess With Me" in the Killed By Death series. When asked about this, Rocco replied like so many early punk rockers have: "It was an illegal bootleg, but I couldn't be happier that it was put out." Having sold the remainder of his copies, sugar plums are dancing in this ex-Absentees' head. Over the years, a number of former bandmates and former students have achieved varying degrees of success (running the gamut from the Runaways of yesteryear to No Doubt in the past year). It remains to be seen if an Absentees reunion is in order, or if it's best for Rocco to enjoy the belated recognition, keeping the past at a comfortable distance.